Monday, April 8, 2013

Student Podcasts - "This I Believe" Essays

Student's is Ms. McCabe's English 9 classes in Chatham High School have published their "This I Believe" essays as podcasts. Ms. McCabe wanted to have an opportunity for her students to publish their writing for a audience outside of the walls of their classroom.  Students refined their writing with the goal of sharing for a global audience.  This authentic practice resulted in increased student engagement and cultivated their 21st Century digital literacy skills. It was also a lot of fun! Students utilized Audacity to record their narration and our  Schoolwires website to publish them.

Below is an excerpt from Ms. McCabe's website describing the project:

From 1951 to 1955, Edward R. Murrow hosted This I Believe, a daily radio program that reached 39 million listeners. On this broadcast, Americans — both well known and unknown — read five-minute essays about their personal philosophy of life. They shared insights about individual values that shaped their daily actions. A first volume of This I Believe essays, published in 1952, sold 300,000 copies — more than any other book sold in the U. S. that year except for the Bible. In fact, these Murrow broadcasts were so popular that a curriculum was developed to encourage American high school students to compose essays about their most significant personal beliefs.

Fifty years later, This I Believe, Inc., is continuing the mission of inviting Americans of all ages and all walks of life to examine their belief systems and then write and share a 500-word personal essay, a “This I Believe” essay.

In introducing the original series, host Edward R. Murrow said, “Never has the need for personal philosophies of this kind been so urgent.” We would argue that the need is as great now as it was 50 years ago.

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